VW Australia reveals Walkinshaw-tuned Amarok W580X
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Volkswagen is set to shake up the ute market with a high-performance model ready for off-road action.
Having built a tough-looking truck optimised for tarmac use in the GT-inspired Amarok W580S, Volkswagen and its Walkinshaw tuning partner are set to release a more rugged variant in the W580X.
Aimed at range-topping machines such as the Ford Ranger Raptor and Nissan Navara Warrior, the Amarok W580X benefits from significant suspension and hardware changes to increase its off-road potential.
Lifted suspension, underbody armour, bash plates and rock sliders will join an optional snorkel on a long list of changes to the machine.
New 18-inch wheels with all-terrain tyres and wheel arch extensions help differentiate the W580X from its road-focused cousin.
The machines will have other features in common, including a bumper, grille and stickers that separate them from regular Amaroks.
As with the W580S, the off-road model has the same twin-turbocharged V6 diesel engine as cheaper versions of the Amarok.
Emissions and homologation laws make it prohibitively expensive for VW to extract more power from the 3.0-litre engine for relatively niche models, though you could hardly accuse the 190kW/580Nm motor of lacking grunt or refinement.
The same goes for an excellent eight-speed automatic transmission fitted as standard.
VW Australia spokesman Nick Reid says the new model will be offered in limited numbers.
“The first W-Series was a chance to offer something that no-one else in the market could do – a powerful, dynamic ute that was as comfortable on highways as it was on alpine passes,” said Amarok W-Series lead Nick Reid.
“With the new W580X, our W-Series Off-Road Amarok, we can lean in to another aspect of the Amarok’s platform. We know the Amarok is among the best off-roaders around in standard form, but with Walkinshaw giving it a unique tune, we’ll be able to offer something unbeatable to Australian customers.”
Considering that the W80S was an Australian exclusive, we doubt that the W80X will make it to New Zealand.